Monday, September 24, 2012

October 2012: Innovative Approaches to Sustainability at Other Campuses

Here are a few selections of the innovative approaches to sustainability taking place on other college campuses. Each of these examples was chosen because it's something that UCSC could potentially implement in some form. If you see something here that you want to make a reality at UCSC, contact the Sustainability Office and we will help you direct your ideas toward fruition!

Harvard Sets New Box Fort Record with Move-in Cardboard Boxes & Stores Them for Move-Out
1,081 boxes, more than 100 students, and six hours
Don't throw those move-out boxes away just yet! You can flatten them, stash 'em under your bed, and hang onto them for move-out. You will not be alone: The second weekend in September, students at Harvard built a castle with 1,081 used moving boxes. At break-down time, volunteers from the Environmental Action Committee flattened all the best ones and packed them into bin boxes. Harvard Recycling will store them until May and bring them back for the Move-out Box Sale. So the moving boxes will have been used at least three times, raising over $1,000 for a student charity in the process. Read more and see photos here. At UCSC last year, we recycled 38,840 pounds of cardboard during move-in. That's more than 300 trees! Maybe next year we can have a box fort contest in each college...

RIT Announces Bottled Water Reduction Policy
Departments and campus groups will no longer be allowed to use university funds to purchase single-serving bottles of water. In addition, hydration stations will be installed in all future construction and major renovation projects. Find out about UCSC's own Take Back the Tap, an initiative to end the sale of single use plastic water bottles on campus, on their Facebook page. They are seeking volunteers this year, so if you're interested please send them an email.

U Oregon Joins Smoke and Tobacco Free Campus Movement
The university is the latest campus to declare a smoke- and tobacco-free campus, joining a movement that is on the rise in the U.S. with 126 schools that have moved forward with smoke-free policies that apply to all areas of campus this year. Between January 2011 and January 2012, the number of U.S. colleges and universities with total smoking bans rose from 466 to 648, reports the Christian Science Monitor. What do you think about tobacco-free campuses? What would it take to make UCSC tobacco-free? Post your thoughts in the comments below.

UC reaches milestone of 100 LEED certifications!
A new lab on the UCLA campus is more than just a place for cutting-edge research into paraplegia and cancer: It is the 100th green-certified facility in the UC system, a milestone in sustainability that puts it far ahead of other universities around the nation. The UC system is the first American university to have 100 LEED-certified facilities, followed by Harvard, which had 75 as of May 2012. 'We believe strongly in these efforts, and we will continue to lead by example when it comes to sustainability and environmental stewardship,' said Nathan Brostrom, the UC system's executive vice president for business operations, who oversees sustainability efforts." UCSC has 6 LEED-certified buildings, including buildings in Porter College, the Cowell Student Health Center, and Engineering 2.

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